No one wants to hear criticism on the job. As humans, we want people to like us and like our work. Of course, we will make mistakes, but it is never easy to have someone point them out.
Alexander Kjerulf explains his “7 Steps to Handle Criticism at Work Well” on his blog, positivesharing.com. I’ve listed his steps below and provided my own brief explanations. Kjerulf also covers the topics, Never Put Up With Attacks in the Workplace and Feedback is a Gift , in his blog post. If you’d like to read Kjerulf’s full article, click the links above.
Really listen to what your boss is saying rather than thinking about a defense. Ask questions to make sure you understand. Showing that you’re an engaged listener shows that you respect and value his or her opinion, and you may just learn something along the way.
2. Assume good intentions
Assume the person is giving you feedback to help you grow and improve your job performance. In most cases, criticism at work isn’t meant to attack you or hurt your feelings.
3. Do not get defensive and start making excuses
Be humble, and say what you’ve learned from the discussion.
4. Don’t take it personally
This isn’t about you as a person; it’s about your work. The problem being addressed doesn’t take away from all the wonderful things that you have done. It doesn’t take away from your worth. Keep your “all or none” thinking in check.
5. See criticism as help
It’s up to you to turn criticism into “constructive criticism.” Instead of denying, rationalizing, and blaming others, try to learn something from the experience, even if you really believe the criticism is unjustified. There is probably a lesson in there somewhere.
6. Don’t be too hard on yourself
Everyone makes mistakes. Getting down on yourself won’t help. Feel empowered to improve, and get excited about the changes you plan to make.
7. Say thank you
Show that you value the feedback. Even if you disagree with the critique, try to find something in it that you do agree with and say thank you.
Are there any tips you can think of that Alexander Kjerulf didn’t mention? Comment and let me know!